Tom Chick claims Hunipop is more Jane Austen than porn, Nick Diamon debuts his best dwarf voice, and Jason McMaster forces people to watch cutscenes they’d otherwise skip.
We choose our picks for this years Oscars, but we don’t limit ourselves to the nominees. So many overlooked movies, so little time…
Mike Pollmann gets to choose from sixteen different characters, Hassan Lopez will steal your friends off your own front lawn, and Tom Chick can’t tell a salmon from a trout.
Jason McMaster kills things to make pants out of them and Tom Chick loses interest in world domination. And if you’re looking for a place to send your children to get an education, Chick Academy is accepting students!
I don’t mean to belittle dumb movies. Some of my favorite movies are dumb. But Godzilla vs. Kong is steeped in a special kind of concentrated studio inanity. It stinks of dumb. It is the most profoundly stupid “vs.” movie since Batman vs. Superman. It’s not even worthy of Syfy’s Animal X vs. Animal Y movies, which can at least pretend they’re being deliberately campy. Godzilla vs. Kong is so profoundly dumb that it doesn’t even know it’s dumb.Continue reading →
After forty turns of searching for the Psi-Fish I’m supposed to defeat, and whose dwellings are supposed to be abundant, and with whom I’m supposed to be at war, I have found no Psi-Fish. I have explored enough of the map to discover three NPC factions and their dwellings. A map this size should have three NPC factions, and I’ve found Therians, Forgotten, and Paragon. If there are Psi-Fish here, they’re a fourth faction tucked into tiny pockets of unexplored territory. It seems unlikely.
But just to verify that something is broken, I looked up how to unfog the map using a cheat code. The situation is that dire. I have resorted to cheat codes! Sure enough, there are no Psi-Fish on this map. It is Psi-Fish-less. My mission to capture two Psi-Fish dwellings is literally impossible.
Cue the Lalo Schifrin!Continue reading →
Tom Chick and Kelly Wand finally see Nomadland and they both agree that it’s no Monster Hunter.
Psi-Fish owned sectors are Abundant! Psi-Fish make more Demands! Psi-Fish start at War with you!
So said the intel briefing for Angelus, a planet supposedly lousy with psionic extradimensional fish. These fish have breached our dimension, bringing with them Void storms and deposits of cosmite. Our empire’s Penumbra faction wants us to wipe out two Psi-Fish dwellings. At which point, I’ve confirmed that we can declare “mission accomplished” and pack it in. This isn’t going to be like the hopperhound fiasco on Virginia, where I ended up having to burn the whole planet because I misinterpreted my orders. Which happens. You can’t make an empire without burning a few planets. But now we’re here to do a job and then call it a day, which will secure the Void Lure for our empire, which will let us recruit Psi-Fish during later missions. “Capable Pets,” the Psynumbra told us when they named the mission.
So where are all the Psi-Fish at?Continue reading →
Mike Pollmann is raiding tombs, Tom Chick is syndicating Eternal Love, and Hassan Lopez is worshipping a lizard in the garden.
By order of the Wasila Combine — heck, let’s go ahead and make this a religious thing as well — and by the will of the Promethean god, we’re going to uncork our PyrX refineries (pictured) to flood the atmosphere with toxic gas. Actually, I’m not sure if there’s a Promethean god. It seems like there would be a Promethean god. Or at least an ancient civilization that worshipped some god. Whatever the theology or lack thereof, we’re erasing all life on the planet from within the safety of our own territory. This will require a lot less micromanagement than doing it with armies.
500 energy and 50 operational points later — Planetary Purification ain’t cheap — it’s a doomsday party and everyone is invited!Continue reading →
Okay, I know I said we’d be home by the Dvar equivalent of Christmas. I might have even said turn 50. And here it is, turn 68, we’ve wiped out our fifth hopperhound hive, and we’re still on Virginia. Where we will remain for some time. Let me explain.Continue reading →
Tom Chick, Jason McMaster, and Nick Diamon haul ass across England, go around in circles, and then get stuck on an island. And that’s just Forza Horizon 4!
I’m occasionally surprised to hear people who play sci-fi strategy games complain that they don’t want to build their own ships. Since Master of Orion, this has been a fundamental part of the genre. It was the cornerstone of warfare in Brian Reynold’s Alpha Centauri. But it’s especially important in a strategy game that emphasizes tactical combat. And being an Age of Wonders game, Planetfall emphasizes tactical combat. In fact, I’d argue it’s a shell for tactical combat. If you just want to scooch armies around a map and plop buildings into your cities, there are other games better suited to your preferences. Planetfall, like developer Triumph Studios’ previous games, is for people who want to play detailed tactical battles set in the larger context of a 4X. Some designers rightly understand that tactical combat can interfere with the flow of a grand strategy game. But those designers didn’t make Planetfall. People who love tactical combat made Planetfall.Continue reading →
It’s the best videogame adaptation since Sonic the Hedgehog!
In the years since Civilization VI was released by Firaxis, you could say it’s gotten a ton of post-release support. If you consider “support” adding stuff rather than fixing things that don’t work. The process has been fascinating. Rather than adjust the design or the AI to make a game that actually works, Firaxis has instead piled up increasingly absurd ways to play, with no regard for balance, tuning, or even the principles of good game design. Civilization VI has become a ridiculous, slapdash, and profoundly idiotic sandbox. One of the folks on this site’s forum called it “Goat Simulator for 4X games.”
And given that every Civilization since IV appeals to people who don’t care whether the AI can play the design, it’s a pitch-perfect approach. I suspect it’s done very well for Firaxis. They’ve correctly identified their target audience and they’ve given them what they want.
Meanwhile, I’ve been playing another 4X with pitch-perfect post-release support that includes perhaps the most dramatic change I’ve seen applied to a strategy game, short of a total conversion mod. Age of Wonders: Planetfall was given a free update last November that introduced Galactic Empire mode. It’s nothing short of revolutionary and as a result, Planetfall is now the definitive expression of Dune.Continue reading →